For those of you who have upgraded to SaaS, what are your top 3 benefits and top 3 drawbacks of having made the switch? Thanks in advance for your input!
Hi Susan! Thanks for starting such an interesting discussion. Here are my top three benefits and drawbacks, and I encourage others to chime in, too!
Top Benefits (I have more than 3!):
Top 3 Drawbacks:
Overall, though, I want to be clear that we are happy to have moved to SaaS, and the benefits outweigh the drawbacks. The first drawback is probably the biggest one, with the other two being more about us adjusting to more modern practices regarding technology.
I would love to hear what others have to say! Bradley Katz, how do you guys like being on SaaS at IIT? Who else in ChiA-BUG is on SaaS?
Thanks, Stephanie Richter, for the detailed response! I really appreciate it! So convincing your institution that SaaS is worth the price because you were due to replace servers, which also would have been costly. How do you find the cost in comparison to self-hosted? If you factor in the cost of servers and personnel dedicated to managing them, does it even things out pretty closely? Or is it still a pretty big jump? Our administration is under the impression that SaaS will be 2-3 times the cost as our current self-hosted environment, but I think once we factor in staff and hardware, it won't be that significant a difference.
Cost was definitely part of the incentive, to avoid the hardware purchase and cost of configuring, but our IT is also trying to make SaaS the go-to strategy for most of our enterprise applications. We definitely factored long-term hardware and software cost into the decision, but the benefits of modern architecture, 0-downtime updates, and the roadmap to Ultra are important benefits that could be worth the increased cost.
I would definitely talk to an account executive about cost of licensing SaaS. I can't share particulars of our agreement, because I wasn't privy to them, but I do know that the cost was not as much of an increase as we expected. It's better to have actual values than speculation! Now that Steve has left Blackboard, you should be able to discuss it with Kristian Photopoulos, the Regional Vice President for our area, until they have hired and trained a permanent replacement for Steve.
Yes, I agree, speculation is just that, speculation. I'm not in a position to talk cost particulars with Bb, as that is IT's domain, but I can't even get them interested because they are convinced that it will be prohibitively expensive. Do you pull any data or artifacts from Bb? We have a script that pulls all syllabi for the academic divisions so that faculty don't have to submit them. I'm also hearing that we wouldn't be able to do that kind of thing with SaaS and I'm trying to figure out if that is correct or misinformation.
I just saw an invitation to a webinar that might be helpful: Why SaaS, Why Now?, on 2/28 at 12:30 CST.
We do have scripts to pull data, but not files. I wouldn't be certain about whether or not it is possible to do that, but I can find out more (or who you could talk with to verify it). The SaaS Virtual User Group meets every Tuesday at 12:00 CST, and I'll try to ask there to see if anyone has any information.
Quick update for anyone else who comes across this thread (I emailed Susan details directly). There are clients who are automatically pulling files from SaaS. I don't have any info to share on the mechanism, but I am able to report that it is possible. Anyone who is interested should work with their Account Executive or CSM to learn more.
Retrieving data ...